Board Members at Mutual Housing are volunteers, donating their time, expertise and experiences to ensure that our organization meets our mission and stays accountable to the community and its residents. The Board holds monthly meetings, rotating them between the main office and the various mutual housing communities. The board holds an annual board retreat to work with management staff to set goals for each subsequent year, discuss new program and policy initiatives, and evaluate program outcomes.
Board members serve on committees, such as the Audit, Site Acquisition, Board Governance, Resident Impact, and Asset & Property Management. Residents, former residents, community members and professionals may apply to serve on the volunteer board of directors. Current board experience is highlighted below:
Mindy Romero, Chair, is a former resident leader from the Tremont Green Mutual Housing Community in Davis. She currently serves as President of the mutual housing association and chair of the Board and president of Yolo Mutual Housing Association and Mutual Housing California. She is a mom and is the founder and director of the California Civic Engagement Project housed at the UC Davis Center for Regional Change at UC Davis and holds a PhD in Sociology at UC Davis. Mindy chairs the Mutual Housing Executive Committee and is a member of the Audit, Governance and Site Acquisition Committees. She is an appointed member of the Social Service Commission of the City of Davis.
Cathy Creswell, Vice Chair, provides housing, planning, and legislative services through her consulting firm, Creswell Consulting. She is Vice President of the mutual housing association and board co-chair, as well as chairs the Board Governance Committee. She is a member of the Board’s Executive Committee and Site Acquisition Committee. She is currently serving as the President of Sacramento Housing Alliance, a local housing and homeless advocacy organization of which Mutual Housing is a member. Prior to starting her consulting firm, Ms. Creswell served as the appointed Acting Executive Director of the State of California Housing’s Department of Housing and Community Development, and prior to that, served 12 years as Deputy Director in that Department, overseeing the Policy Division. She has over 25 years expertise in affordable housing development, policy, and advocacy.
Elizabeth Beigh, Treasurer, is First Vice President/Commercial Relationship Manager at Farmers & Merchants Bank of Central California. As Treasurer, she chairs the Audit Committee and sits on the Executive Committee. Elizabeth also sits on the Board Governance, Site Acquisition and Asset & Property Management Committees. Elizabeth brings to the board her many relationships with the region’s commercial and residential developers, as well as a great knowledge of the banking community.
Greg Chew is the former chair of a large Portland-based housing nonprofit. He is the senior planner for transit-oriented development and housing at Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) and is the County of Sacramento’s appointee to the Board of Directors. Greg contributes his planning expertise and facilitates relationships with public and private organizations involved in transit-oriented development. Greg is a former chair of the Mutual Housing board, and currently chairs the Site Acquisition Committee, and serves on the Asset & Property Management and Board Governance Committees.
Allison S. Joe, AICP is Chief of Staff to Councilmember Jay Schenirer in the City of Sacramento, which is one of the most diverse districts in the City and focuses on social equity issues, transportation, affordable housing, and food access throughout the District. Formerly Deputy Director for the California Strategic Growth Council, she was deeply involved in programs implementing SB 375, sustainable infrastructure, and infill/transit-oriented development at the state and local levels.
Rebekah Davis is a resident leader at Moore Village Mutual Housing Community in Davis. She serves on the Board’s Site Acquisition and Governance Committees. Since 2007 she has worked at the Davis Waldorf School, where as a former director and current teacher she has developed a broad range of skills including program creation and coordination, staff supervision, community outreach, mediation and contract/budget management. She has a teaching credential with a concentration in Human Development from Rudolph Steiner College, and is studying Cultural and Physical Geography at CSU Sacramento.
Verna Ekpeduma is a resident leader at Mutual Housing at Norwood I, II, III. She serves as Neighborhood Watch Chairperson and is a member of the Resident Council. She is a member of the Board’s Resident Impact Committee. Along with helping to coordinate Fitness and Women’s Empowerment programs within her mutual housing community, she advocates for good local and state policy on behalf of her neighbors through Sacramento A.C.T. and Sacramento Housing Alliance. Verna provides housekeeping services and manages her own healthy living business. Ms. Erby-Ekpeduma has an AA in criminal justice at Sacramento City College and Paralegal at Heald Business College.
Maximo Fernandez is the former Director of the Community Development Department for the City of Sacramento. Prior to that, he served as the City’s Director of Neighborhood Services/Code Enforcement. Mr. Fernandez serves on the Audit Committee and Asset & Property Management Committee. He has over 30 years’ experience in municipal development and redevelopment. His focus at the City was the improvement of the service delivery model. He oversaw the development and implementation of the City’s Rental Housing Inspection Program, now recognized as a national model for ensuring that privately held rental housing is safe and well-maintained, and was a key success of Mutual Housing’s housing advocacy work. Mr. Fernandez was educated at Moorpark College and Cal State Northridge.
Jennifer Higley-Chapman is a resident leader at Moore Village Mutual Housing Community in Davis and active on the resident council. Ms. Higley-Chapman is employed as a Special Education Para educator in the Davis Joint Unified School District. She is a founding member of Uniting for Racial Justice of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Davis and has been active with that group for 8 years. She has served on several board and associations, including at local colleges and universities. Jennifer serves on Mutual Housing’s Resident Impact Committee.
Tricia Stevens is a former Principal Planner with the County of Sacramento, with over 35 years of experience as a city planner in all aspects of planning, including design review, planning entitlements, affordable housing programs, and community engagement. Ms. Stevens serves on the Site Acquisition Committee and the Audit Committee. She has broad experience working with housing developers to revitalize disadvantaged communities and aging commercial corridors. She has been active in mentoring and tutoring at-risk youth with such programs as Reading Partners and Wonder, Inc. Ms. Stevens is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). She has a Masters of Public Administration and a Bachelor’s Degree in planning from Brigham Young University.
Julie Vang is a former resident of Mutual Housing at Dixieanne. When she was a resident, she served on the Resident Council and was a Community Activity Coordinator for Youth Programs, a student intern position at Mutual Housing. Julie is currently a student of Sociology with a minor in Child Development and Communications at California State University of Sacramento. In her high school, West Campus High, Julie was an elected student body representative and officer. She has a variety of volunteer positions locally and throughout the nation through AmeriCorps, including rebuilding homes affected by floods as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity. Due to her leadership abilities and excellence as an AmeriCorps volunteer. She was promoted to an AmeriCorps Team leader corps members age 18 – 24 years old.
Molly Chiah is a former resident of Victory Townhomes Mutual Housing Community. She previously served on the board of directors but had to cut her term short due to a residency opportunity after she received a Doctor of Pharmacy at University of the Pacific. She has returned to Sacramento where she is now a licensed California pharmacist. When Molly was a resident of mutual housing, she developed programs for young people, an accomplishment which earned her a city award recognition from then Mayor Heather Fargo. While she served on the board, Molly was a compelling speaker and ambassador for Mutual Housing’s resident engagement programs. She is an exceptional role model for youth as they consider college opportunities.
Anthony Rodriguez is a resident leader at Mutual Housing at the Highlands. He serves on the resident council of this community located in Sacramento County. He also is an active member of the Mutual Housing Resident Impact Committee which advises the board of directors on matters impacting the lives of mutual housing residents. He also volunteers with residents of other affordable housing in California in Residents United Network (RUN). Through RUN, Anthony advocates for affordable housing policy and funding at the State Capitol. Anthony worked for many years as a professional in the restaurant industry, working in such popular places as Fat City Bar & Grill and the Turf Club. He is an active community volunteer and is a member of the Culinary Ministry and Men’s Choir at Faith Fellowship Church.
Samantha Newton is a resident leader at The Westerner, A Mutual Housing Community. She serves on the resident council at this community located in the City of Sacramento. Samantha is a Human Resource professional, having served as Human Resource Manager for over 15 years. She currently is employed in human resources by WellSpace Health, a local Federally Qualified Health Center that provides physical and mental health services for those who might otherwise go without medical care. Her many responsibilities include onboarding of volunteers and interns. Samantha is an active community volunteer with a long history of volunteerism, including working with Kiwanis Family House residents at UC Davis.